The photos below have nothing to do with this post. I had no pictures to put with the post, so I just took a series that I was pretty sure would never make it to SkyWatch Friday. This is a sunrise about 3 weeks ago. The pictures were taken within about two minutes and I think include the view from every direction from my house.

click photo to enlarge

click photo to enlarge

Before I started blogging, I hesitated quite a long time to do it, even though pressured to do it by two of my cousins. The main reason was time. I  knew I did not have time. I still do not, as evidenced by my irregular posting and visiting. But another reason is that I thought it was a bit narcissistic. I thought WHO CARES about the daily happenings of anyone else.  Before I dove in myself, I spent several months reading other blogs. I realized they are not all self-absorbed. (I do not read the ones that I think are.)

However, I have been thinking about my blog lately because one fairly regular reader and commenter once said something like “whatever your blog is about.”  I laughed (I often laugh at his comments; he has a wonderful sense of humor whether or not he means to be humorous.) because it is true.  My blog has no theme. I knew it would not, but it is glaringly apparent when compared to the blogs I visit. Most could be categorized as something. Mine cannot. It is about me. It does not get much more narcissistic than that. And this post will probably be the worst yet. Thank you to all you who come here even though the topics are so varied and there might be three sentences one visit and an epistle the next. And for putting up with me.

click photo to enlarge

click photo to enlarge

Today I did not really want to say anything about September 11 because so many others have. I also find it irritating how something so tragic that drew a nation together for a few days (or an afternoon?) is now often used in a political sense to tear it apart. (Certainly not everyone, but I have seen plenty of  “Remember 9/11, and be sure you remember why this event makes me right in my political opinions.” I have seen this from opposing viewpoints. Can we just remember a tragedy without being disparaging?) I rarely mention politics in  this space because I hate politics. I hate extremes. I think all sides have extremes. I think the extreme left and the extreme right both want to take away freedom–just in different ways that appeal only to them. (My viewpoints make both sides upset, so if I really got into this, I would likely alienate my entire readership.)  I hate statements that have little other purpose than to be inflammatory. I hate it when people can dish it out but cannot take it.  So I choose to avoid the topic entirely–most of the time. Which is why I was going to avoid any mention of 9/11.  But something compelled me to tell my part of that day’s story. I was pregnant with Chic. I was at work. The tiny television in the Conference Room was on for people to watch the horrific scene over and over. (I am personally not a fan of watching the same tragedy over and over.) Then the Pentagon was hit. Just a couple of weeks before that Prince Charming had been doing an internship at the Pentagon. (Leaving my pregnant self home alone much of the summer.) What was horrible before was real then. But real for me was not, and will never be, what real was for the people who lived and worked  in New York City and Washington, D.C. on that day or who lost someone. They know real. The rest of us just speculate.

click photo to enlarge

click photo to enlarge

In my car today, on the way to drop off some stamps and to pick up Chic, I suddenly started crying about my mother. There is  nothing special about today in relation to her, but maybe I was thinking about the 9/11 loss. Chicklet was talking to me, and I could not even speak. When I started blogging, I thought I would write a lot about my mother. About her life. About her death. About her 10-year dying process. But I have written very little. Some days I want to just unload it all. But part of me is afraid. The few times I  have discussed her before, the reactions have not been at all what I expected. My reason for wanting to share her story has to do with lessons learned. It is not about me at all. I do not want sympathy or consoling words. I want people to understand what happened and why. I guess I do not know how to say it in a way to make people understand, or else I am not ready. But today, I missed her.

click photo to enlarge

click photo to enlarge

Last Friday (or Saturday, I don’t remember when it went up) I did a post and said I would see you on Monday. I did not. The day had several totally unexpected things happen (I spent most of the day in front of the computer working on things for Art Class), but ended well (and also unexpectedly) with an afternoon/evening with our “gaming friends” playing Settlers of  Catan–Cities and Knights. (And have been behind blogging since.)

click photo to enlarge

click photo to enlarge

Now for some more random (and hopefully lighter than the first two sections) things…

1– I  have decided I do not like cooking much right now. Nothing has changed, really, but I get SO. MUCH. ACCOMPLISHED on days I do not cook. I am great at multi-tasking, but I think I hate it. When I cook, I want to focus on cooking. When I cannot focus on it, I think I would rather not do it at all.

2– Our electricity has been flashing lately for every thundercloud that goes over. I realize this is common in some parts of the country (southern Missouri, for example), but it is not common here. And it is starting to get on my nerves because I am at a computer so much of the time.

3– I have two times a day when I can think–really think. Those times are when I exercise and when I cook. (And cooking might involve so many other things that it does not count.) But I am thinking about a post relating to my aerobic activity which is biking (usually to school, but sometimes in the neighborhood). It will mostly be a rant, but I cannot get it out of my head.

click photo to enlarge

click photo to enlarge

4– My husband is gone. He will be gone most of the weekend at a seminar related to his position at church. I hate it when he is gone. (For many reasons not the least of which he is not here to have water boiling on the stove to add to my bath when it gets cold–because I do not like running water in the tub because the wait for hot water is too long.)

5– Tonight’s bath is scented with Black Amethyst from Bath and Body Works. I was not into that scent much during the heat of summer, but I am liking it a lot again now. (Have I told you how absolutely glorious September is in this part of the country?)

6– My biggest project of the week has been doing my taxes. No, not estimated quarterlies, but the ones that were due on April 15. The last few years we have filed for extensions (even though we always get money back) because I do not have time to do them (and Prince Charming, forgive me, is useless in this area). But they have NEVER been this late. If I were married to Daryl (which I think is impossible because neither of us are lesbians, though neither of us oppose them and their relationships, and who also has a wonderful 9/11 post today), she would have divorced me by now for how long this has taken. Prince Charming is just happy he does not have to bother with financial things.

7– I really, really, REALLY do not like word verification on Blogspot. Really.

8– When I grow up, I want to be her.


There are so many things I want to say here. Some of somewhat importance (at least to me), and some of no importance at all. I just do not have time. Sometimes I have time to think, but usually that time does not allow to type something. (Usually it is when I am riding my bicycle. Sometimes when cooking.)

So instead of writing something meaningful (to me) that has been going through my head, I thought I would let  you in on a lot of the non-meaningful things, which hopefully might hold some fun and humor…


A week ago yesterday, Prince Charming brought home some special  Godiva chocolates for me. Do these things not just LOOK so lovely that you would almost want to put them on a shelf and look at them forever? But you cannot have your cake, and eat it, too, so I will admit to their only being two left.


I am a “save-the-best-for-last” type of girl. (Which often means I do not get anything because someone else grabbed it all.) So the ones I have left are the “pretty ones.” That would be the orange one and the green one. These things have been to DIE for. They are ice cream flavors (L to R): Orange Creme, Neapolitan, Pecan Caramel Sundae (OMG!), Mint Chocolate Chip and Hazelnut.

He also brought home a little package for Chic and Chicklet to share (not so fancy for them). At 5 and 7, he is already ruining them for the men who will later enter their lives, but I thought about that a little, and I think it is good that they will have some high standards. (Hopefully in areas other than chocolate as well.)



Here is the Chocolate Chip Cookies recipe Chic used to make the cookies a couple of posts ago.

1 c packed brown sugar

1/2 c granulated sugar

2 sticks butter, softened

2 lg eggs

2 tsp vanilla extract

2-1/2 c flour

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

12 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips

1 c chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 300 F. Combine flour, soda and salt in medium bowl. Mix well. Set aside.

In large bowl, combine sugars with electric mixer at medium speed. Add butter and mix to form a grainy paste. Add eggs and vanilla. Mix until just blended. Do not overmix.

Add flour mixture, chocolate chips and nuts. Blend at low speed until just mixed. Do not overmix.

Drop onto ungreased cookie sheets. Bake 18-22 minutes (20 minutes almost always works at my location) or until golden. Transfer immediately to cool, flat surface.

Note: The recipe does not actually call for nuts, but believe it or not, I do not have a  huge sweet tooth. (Ignore that Godiva bit above.) Too much sugar gets to me, and I like nuts in cookies. Besides the texture, it sort of balances the sweet.


All of the cards have been mailed for my giveaway. (To Maria, Fishing Guy and Leia.)  It was a little later than I planned because Prince Charming is the designated Post Office gopher.  He had some unexpected travel which meant some crazy work hours before that, so he just had a chance to do it.

The banner for Painted Maypole is in process. I just got the paper I wanted to use. It was not as bright as I expected, so I am going a slightly different direction with it. I hope to finish it by Monday. I just loved how these scraps looked in the waste basket, however, so I had to take a picture.



In September we will have lived in Albuquerque for seven years. Also in this house for seven years. We initially thought we would be in this house about five years, but things never work out that way. Now we are not sure we will ever leave, so I have finally decided to break down and paint. I am not a fan of white walls, but most of my walls are white because I cannot decide what color to paint them. We have painted the girls’ rooms, and I hated every second of it, so if I paint, I want it to be something I know I will love. I will NOT be painting the next phase (living room, dining room), so that will be expensive. That means I definitely want to love it. So I got a bunch of paint chips a year ago (yes, some things move slowly here), and I finally picked out some colors. I called a friend I trust to look at them for me. She liked one, but not the other. She suggested I buy samples and paint in the areas I would be painting and look at it for a while. I have. I think she is right. I love the colors, but I do not think they match “us.”  What do you think about them?

Although this is not exactly what the colors look like, this picture represents them the best. (Click photo to enlarge.)

Although this is not exactly what the colors look like, this picture represents them the best. (Click photo to enlarge.)

This is the giant wall--probably about 20 feet (6+ m?) high that I want to do in the reddish color. The art we have is four paintings that will cover most of the wall.

This is the giant wall--probably about 20 feet (6+ m?) high that I want to do in the reddish color. The art we have is four paintings that will cover most of the wall.

The rest of the living room/dining room will be in the "other color." This is the picture of the stair/loft wall which is the most noticeable wall for the color. (Ignore the fact that unnamed members of the family view this wall as a laundry hamper and shelf for anything they feel like putting on it.)

The rest of the living room/dining room will be in the "other color." This is the picture of the stair/loft wall which is the most noticeable wall for the color. (Ignore the fact that unnamed members of the family view this wall as a laundry hamper and shelf for anything they feel like putting on it.)

I think we’ll keep the reddish one and go for a brown or gold instead of the orange-ish one. Back to the store for more samples. I am also thinking a pale yellow might be OK. It sort of has to match some art we have had for a VERY long time just sitting around waiting to be put on the walls. I do not know why these things take me so long to figure out.


There was no sand at the pool, but I liked this picture, and sand makes me think of water.

There was no sand at the pool, but I liked this picture, and sand makes me think of water.

This next part will probably alienate someone. I apologize for that, but not for my opinion.

Last week on our pool day there was an obvious mom’s club there. I was reminded very clearly why I am not a member of a mom’s club. There are only three topics discussed by most of the women in such clubs. (At least the one’s I have briefly been a part of or have witnessed. I know there are better ones out there, but it is not important enough for me to search through the garbage to find one.) None of these topics interest me, but often they irritate me. And my smug self was not disappointed because the overly loud conversations overheard were about the #1 topic–cosmetic surgery, specifically breast surgery (bigger/smaller/whatever). So predictable. So glad I was not part of it. (In case you are interested in the other two topics, in order they are “husband bashing” (my least favorite) and “one-upping everyone else on the exploits of their children.”)


Tonight our family went to find a letterbox. We were coming home near sunset while a monsoon storm was building. It made some fantastic clouds, but the big news is that I got my FIRST EVER shot of lightning! This photo is actually my second shot. I am saving the first shot for a SkyWatch post (probably not this week).  This is not the best picture in the world, but I am somewhat pleased with the one I will show later. It was an incredible sky!

click photo to enlarge

click photo to enlarge


I have so many other things to say, but just cannot work it in right now. I hope you are having a great weekend!

Note: I wrote this to post yesterday, but forgot about the My World meme. (Scroll down if that is why you are here.) So it’s today. But I was too tired too lazy did not feel like changing all the references about “yesterday, etc.” to make sense. If something does not make sense, then think about it a day earlier… or just get over it! (I am certain many things I write/say do not make sense!)

You just might be a redneck if… you are a mom.

Since I have been a mom, it has been a rare day that I can remember to put sunscreen on all exposed parts of my body. My children are always slathered in sunscreen. Chic has red hair and Chicklet has somewhat strawberry blonde hair (definitely reddish), and they have the skin to match. Neither has ever been really sunburned in her life. I never forget to put sunscreen on every exposed inch of THEM. But since they came along, their mother gets one or two good sunburns a year. Sometimes I forget to put it on entirely. However, I usually remember to put it on; I just miss an area. Yesterday it was my neck and chest. This is the result:

no photo enhancement; this is real

It was the annual Fall Fesitval for Chic’s school. It was a PERFECT day. It was hot, even for me. (I had two snow cones.) I wore several layers and was down to the sleeveless shirt before it even started. (I was in charge of the event and was there early to set up my own portion and direct everyone else.) My arms are not burned. My face is not burned. But I completely forgot my chest and neck when I was applying sunscreen.  Those children suck out brain cells when they are inside of us, and somehow there must be an invisible umbilical cord remaining to suck out more after they leave us.

If you knew the lengths I go to with what I wear to avoid a “farmer tan” or red neck, you would understand why this is so irritating to me.


Card Giveaway

I will schedule a post of the results from the giveaway to go up on Wednesday when I am not here. This has been a lot of fun for me, and I hope it has for you, too!


Why I am So Far Behind with Blogging

In my very short time blogging, I will be the first to tell anyone that it is OK to get behind, to not post, to not visit, to not do any blogging at all because we blog about life, life is not blogging. However, I for some reason feel the need to explain why I am so far behind, and some of you have not “seen” me in 3 or 4 weeks.

Do you know that in Google Reader, when you have more than 1000 new posts to read, it just says “1000+?” Well it does. This morning it said that. I quickly skimmed enough things that I just “look at” to get it to a number I could figure out, and there were 1066 in my reader this morning. A month ago this would have made me CRAZY, but 1-1/2 weeks ago, there were 1356 in there. In the past 1-1/2 weeks, I have gotten it into the low 600’s, but more keep coming, and there is just too much going on here. This is what it is…

First, I was on a trip to Missouri. (Oh yes, before that I had guests here.) I do this twice a year for business reasons and to spend time with my family. While there, I have computer access most of the time, but the time to do anything more than check important e-mails (which is not even the e-mail address for my blogging) is quite limited. While there, we play and visit.

Chicklet and "Boots"

So I came back and put a little effort into trying to catch up, but my life is a busy one. No, I do not work outside of my home, but I have a home business. Although it is not as on fire as it was a couple of years ago, it is at the limit of what I can handle these days. Last week I had three events relating to it. THREE! I usually try to limit it to one, but things just happened that way.

In addition to the business, I teach art weekly at Chic’s school. This is all day on Wednesdays. It is my third year doing this (Chic was not even a student there when I started), and it is a volunteer position. I really like doing it most of the time, but it is an entire day every week that nothing in my private life gets accomplished. This year is better than last because I have one less class (which means most of the time I actually have time between classes to tear down and set up for the next one), and I give students art grades rather than their teachers giving them grades for my class. (Which means that I have more leverage in class for their sometimes unruly behavior. But the Kindergarten teacher has shared with me that after parent-teacher conferences, one parent is quite angry with me and wants a meeting because his child got an A- in art. I will not elaborate on this other than to say that I grade on attendance, behavior and following instructions. I do not grade on ability–which I would like to do sometimes, but I am sure the parents would really flip out over that.)

On Wednesday nights Chic and Chicklet have a program at church called Pathfinders. It is similar to Boy Scouts/Girls  Scouts, but it is co-ed. In addition to this, in order for the kids to not get home at unreasonable hours on a school night, they start early–too early for some to go home after work, so there is food at this event. Who do you think makes the food? I trade off with one other person, and last week was “my” week. (It was not really my week, but it seems I get a few more than the other. I think it is because I “don’t work.”) So last week I was entirely tied up Monday-Thursday with my business, art, and Pathfinders. I forgot to mention we have to go to gymnastics after school on Tuesdays (it is a school program, but not at the school), and do not get home until 6. You can imagine when I made the food for Wednesday night. (I didn’t. Prince Charming did it this time.)

Friday I spent the day tying up loose ends for Fall Festival. My problem with THIS part of my life is that volunteers are scarce. At the last minute we had plenty food for the event, but we never had QUITE enough activities because we just did not have enough volunteers. I personally “manned” three separate activities. Prince Charming was in charge of two. (Which meant our kids were largely unattended, so we just spent a fortune buying them tickets so they would be entertained. Now we have PILES of loot that they won… PILES. (We could do our own carnival with their winnings.)

Saturday is a rest day for us. But Saturday night, we had a Pathfinder function to attend. It is not normal for those things to happen on Saturday night–maybe once or twice a year, but wouldn’t you know it would be the day before Fall Festival?

The Fall Festival was good. I do not know the money intake yet, but it seemed to be well-attended. It is only my second year of involvement with it, so I do not have a lot to which to compare it.

The point is, I had a LOOOONG week.

But the good news is that this week is much better. NO business events. NO Pathfinders. (I do not know why it is canceled, but I will never complain about that.) Nothing other than some Halloween activities. So after I catch up with bill paying and my Church treasurer job and some organizing stuff I need to do, I will attack the blogging thing. But the best thing about getting so far behind is that I can handle numbers in the hundreds on my reader.  I can go to bed without a second thought with an overflowing reader. So I guess all this activity has had its benefits.  But I am EXTRA glad it is over (for now–I have lots of projects coming up-but I have a week “off”… sort of.)


The Dress

One last note. I got the dress. It IS pretty.  The color is nice, and it does not look horrible on me, and it actually fits in the hips (surprise), BUT, I cannot zip it up. I have always had a large rib cage, but after children, it expanded. It just will not zip. They are going to exchange it for a larger size, which IF it zips up will likely mean I have to alter the rest to be smaller. I will keep you posted. And that reminds me. Your comments on that were SO funny! I did not have time to reply (see above), but I am replying today within the comments, so check it out if you would like. (There are comments about SkyWatch in there because I do not know how to move the comments from the top to the bottom, so you will just have to skip over those.)

And check back tomorrow to see the results of the Giveaway! I’ll be posting 4 days in a row this week. How crazy am I? (Don’t get used to it!)

I am 43 years old. My age is not something I am afraid to tell people. My weight, on the other hand, is a giant secret (one which at the moment I do not even know).

I have been gone all day–about 14 hours. Well, I was  home for about 45 minutes in the afternoon. Anyway, I was just checking my e-mail to see if there was anything pressing because I am tired and want to go to bed. But I got an e-mail that made me laugh so hard, it just seemed “blog-worthy” to me.

This was the attachment (taken with a camera phone, I assume):


You don't WANT to click to enlarge!

You don't WANT to click to enlarge!!

This is a dress like one I am supposed to wear in a wedding in March. Are you laughing, too? It is strapless. Please, people! I am in relatively good shape, but I am no Supermodel or even non-Supermodel! I have NEVER worn strapless dresses–even in my young, willowy days. My dress has already been purchased. (The bride, by the way, saw this for the first time just a few hours before I did–also after the dresses had been purchased. Another wearer of said dress was on a trip where inexpensive clothing could be obtained. Am I crazy to think it is a little too fitted to be purchased without my trying it on?)

My weightlifting routine has been sadly neglected since last winter. Apparently it is time to kick it back into high gear.

OH NO!!! I just, as I was typing, realized something else. In March, every shred of my desert tan will be GONE! I am of Irish descent, and my skin is a clear indicator of that. What am I going to look like in March in a celery strapless dress? (Mind you everyone else but one in the wedding is of Hispanic descent. Their beautiful skin will look lovely next to this color. Mine will look hideous potentially a little pasty hideous.)

I just quit laughing. Now I am crying.

I may as well add here that I was doing a pretty fair job of catching up on blogs after my trip. But I will not be home a whole lot until Monday without a major project going on. I WILL get there. It is just taking a very long time a while.

On a happier note, if you have not done so already, please check out my card giveaway post here. You have until October 27 to enter.

Normally, I am a “shower girl.” Baths, for me, are not the way to get clean. However, they are relaxing more than almost anything, and I love taking a bath. (And will shower ahead of one if I think I am not “clean” enough.)

And what does this have to do with “smelly stuff?” I have pondered this connection for years. Why do I love baths so much?I believe there are lots of reasons, but a giant one has to do with the scents attached. I have all kinds of scents for my bath. This started when I was in my early 20’s and a Crabtree and Evelyn store opened in our mall. This place enchanted me, and not just a little. I immediately bought some “Spring Rain” milk bath for my mom. (Even then, I could not often splurge on myself… except for clothes and shoes.) She loved it. She became a “bath girl” for relaxation. Everyone in the family knew they could buy her the “Spring Rain” milk bath for any holiday and occasion, and it would be the perfect gift.

Then came Victoria’s Secret bath products (ohhhh, Honeysuckle!) and Bath and Body Works. My all-time favorite is/was Eucalyptus/Spearmint from Bath and Body Works (just recently available again), but I also have affairs with other scents. I am very much not faithful in that department. I have summer scents and winter scents and relaxing scents and energizing scents. I am a little bit picky about the type of scent, but I love many, many different ones. It is always a fun game to figure out which scent I will add to the bath each week.

There are other reasons I love baths. They are almost always on Friday night. My life is busy and stressful. (No, I do not “work” outside my home, but I work a LOT inside it, and I volunteer way too much occasionally outside it.) Fridays are the busiest days of all for me. OK, they are not. Wednesdays are worse because the whole day is AWAY from home letting the things at home pile up higher, and Fridays are at least mostly AT home, but they are extremely busy. So when Friday night comes, I have had it. I am exhausted and sometimes downright miserable. My body aches and my mind needs a break. The bath is just the thing. The warm water, the scents, the alone time, the opportunity to read, the time to just think… did I mention the alone time?

When Prince Charming came in to my life, he realized quickly how important this Friday night ritual was to me (and by extension, to him). Sometimes I just did not have the gumption to take a bath, and I think I it made him more miserable than me. When we married, he moved from 1000 miles away to my house. We had two bathrooms, the master bath and the upstairs bath. I always took my baths upstairs because I did not like taking them in the same place I took showers. Sometimes I would skip it because I was too lazy too tired to clean the tub. Prince Charming fixed that for me. He started cleaning the tub right after dinner. No excuses now!

sunset reflection in painting above "garden tub"

sunset reflection in painting above "garden tub"

When we moved to New Mexico, our new house had a “garden tub.” For a bath aficionado like me, this was delightful. Don’t be too envious, the name only meant that it was a larger tub–there were not jets in it or anything fancy–just bigger. BUT bigger is sometimes better, AND it was not in the same place as the shower. Heaven!

With children, the whole bath thing is even more important because as much as I love Chic and Chicklet, by Friday night, I am mostly finished with being a Mom, too. (Although I sometimes let them play in my bubbles for a few minutes before they go to bed… a VERY few minutes.) Prince Charming, being the Prince that he is, is quite in tune with things like this. He sees what my life is like (although some of it is self-inflicted, and he wishes I would not inflict it upon myself), and does whatever he can to make it better. Part of this is insisting I take my Friday night bath. (Prince Charming bought the bath pillow featured at the top of this post. He understands.) I stopped sharing this information with my friends because they either a) hated me for it or b) tried to seduce Prince Charming so they could have such luxuries themselves. EVERY woman I know wants Prince Charming to teach classes to their husbands. This makes Prince Charming quite uncomfortable. Apparently it is not cool for men to go around instructing other men on how to be the perfect husband.

So here is what happens… after dinner, I blog for a few minutes quickly finish up whatever urgent business needs my attention. (Mind you, cleaning up the kitchen and dinner table would never be part of what I do here. I NEVER do that unless Prince Charming is out of town. I cook; he cleans up. I do not leave a huge mess, but whatever mess there is, he takes care of it. Except Saturday evening dinner and all day Sunday when he cooks AND cleans up. NOW ladies, into which of the categories in the previous paragraph do you fall?) So while I am blogging completing some important task, Prince Charming is cleaning my garden tub. He lets me know when it is finished, and in a few minutes I go upstairs to an aromatherapy haven. He lights a candle (or candles) for me that smell yummy. He leaves out the appropriate amount of towels (three) for me. And if at any time during the evening I balk for any reason, he almost forcibly makes me go take a bath.

Now is the time when most women would be leary; I know I was. “What does he want for all of these romantic gestures?” “What kinds of acrobatics am I going to have to perform when I get to bed?” “Is this bath worth it?” Well, the answer is that this is a “no strings attached” bath. Every week. It is my time. No kids, no phone calls (unless I really want to talk to someone), no husband, nothing but me and my scented paradise and the books/magazines that I choose.

I would never have time to read were it not for my bath time.

I would never have time to read were it not for my bath time.

Oh, WAIT… I almost forgot. There is more. He brings me water (because that is what I like to drink) and any confections of my choice. Periodically, it might be a leftover dessert item we have, but more often it is Godiva chocolates (hand-picked by Prince Charming–he loves to get seasonal truffles) or Nutella* on graham crackers. And if I run out of something or need something at any time during my bath, I ungracefully pound rap gently on the floor of the tub three times, and he comes running (not kidding) to see what I need.

* [Are you familiar with Nutella?  Find it.  Try it.  Love it.]

For the record, he says he does all this for himself as much as me, because my life is so busy and stressful, and this little break is beneficial necessary for my mental health state of well-being. This is probably true. In fact, I am pretty sure it is true.

But what is hedoing other than being on call for my every whim while I take my luxurious bath each Friday night? (It lasts 1-1/2 to 2 hours. Sometimes I even have to add extra hot water.  Hmmm…. maybe I should have him keeping hot water ready on the stove! JUST KIDDING!) I really do not care what he is doing. (The kids are in bed, by the way.) For all I know, he is surfing the internet’s p*rn sites, having an internet affair managing his fantasy football team/league or reading himself. (He does seem in a hurry to get me to the tub!) It does not matter to me. I trust him. And this is one of the best gifts he gives to me. (ONE of them. There will be other posts about other reasons he is Prince Charming.)

Sunset through lace curtain over "garden tub"

sunset through lace curtain over "garden tub"

To be honest, I think this whole thing is probably almost as good for him as it is me. No one wants to live with an uptight, stressed out witch partner. He makes sure I am not. And he gets his “strings.” Maybe not on Friday night (but maybe), but definitely more frequently than if I did not have this weekly relax/recharge time alone.

click to enlarge

click to enlarge

 Dear Mr. and Mrs. Grape,

It is my greatest hope that your summer was filled with fun and fulfilling times with your family.

As another year of school begins, it is time to prepare yourselves and your children for classes.  One of these classes is Art.  Contrary to some opinions, art is a class.  It is not free time, study hall, recess, or anything other than a real class.  It can be a fun class if all students cooperate, but a class it is and a class it will remain.

That being said it might be important to remind your children that walking in the door complaining about how hard art class is and how much they hate it might not be a good idea.  Grades are not given on qualily of art, but on paying attention, actually attempting assignments and the general ability to paint paper rather than people.  I thought my 4-year-old was the biggest whiner on the planet until I met your children.

When “homework” is given in art class, it is because your child goofed off so much during class that s/he did not complete her/his assignment.  It is expected that said homework will be completed and taken seriouisly.  It is expected that the homework will exit the Art Room without complaint from the student as it is not his/her teacher’s fault that the project was not completed in the allotted time.

When assignments of materials to bring to class are given, it is expected that said items will actually be brought.  I am having a little trouble wondering why your child does not have a pencil and eraser for other school subjects, but regardless, they are required for art, as are, periodically, other materials.  Your child will not participate in art without required materials.

I realize your family hail from the Napa Valley, but wine (good) is much different from whine (bad).  Please teach your children not to whine at every word from the Art Teacher.  Possibly you could begin this by  teaching with your example.  Just a thought.

Hoping not to choke your children.  Looking forward to another year of art with your whiners children.


Your Children’s Sick-and-tired-of-whining-and-lame-excuses-for-not-having-required-materials  Art Teacher


I got the idea for this letter from In the Gutter who got it from Painted Maypole.  I love theirs so did one of my own.  (Mine is enormously just a little more cynical than theirs are.)